S.and on the internet, if you were to search for “how to preserve the design”, you would quickly enough find some information about how professionals, restaurateurs and experts in recent years have intervened in more or less important collections at the national level, ranging from the Compasso d’Oro Prize to modern objects on display at the PLART Foundation’s premises in Naples.

In fact, the importance of protecting and safeguarding a heritage made up of objects that are direct witnesses to material and popular culture is now recognized more contemporary. And thanks to this scientific recognition, many studies have been conducted that have studied the most commonly used materials, their degradation mechanisms and how they have been transformed at the industrial level. From plastic to leather, from the voltage of the bulbs to the wooden bending systems, design first and foremost tells the habits of our society and the development of what the production system has been.

Somehow this kind of research could be of interest to any collector who in many cases also finds that he is passionate about design. It is not necessary to collect – in the true sense of the word – objects signed by important designers to appreciate and above all to want to know how to behave with modern and contemporary interior design materials. It’s more about want to take better care of their home environmentsfunctionalized with objects as well as aesthetically pleasing, important for the culture of our time.

It is actually necessary to point this out there are different types of objects that can fall under the definition of design. It’s a bit like referring to contemporary art, which is constantly changing and modifying its boundaries. On the other hand, the speech I am going to speak, it would be completely different if we were talking about prototypes or all the unique pieces which are to be regarded as genuine works of art, even if they are of industrial construction.

But without going into too deep theoretical questions, the design I would like to refer to is rather furniture, the items we use every day that complete our home and enhance the experience of our lives.

The designers, as well as contemporary artists on the other hand, have experimented and used many different materials, which is why you need to know your objects to protect them and make them work properly.

The approach that should be used is methodical and coherent. Also in this case, as it is on the other hand constantly suggested when it comes to managing an art collection, it is about approx. be aware of what you own, the stool we lean on while drinking coffee in the morning or the lamp that gives us light while we fall asleep before going to sleep. That does not mean thinking about living in a museum, on the contrary!

The necessary awareness is in those who know that design is first and foremost born to work and not to be treated as an exhibition. Taking better care of our designer furniture means to know the materials, to know why one type of finish was chosen over another, what the original operating mechanism is and that makes the object special.

In a way, it’s about cataloging the pieces of that object in our head. Know him. This way it could be keep an eye on its function over time and see if everything goes as it should. And maintaining it is a way to get to know it better.

unfortunately it is very difficult to synthesize aging processes and standardize them to be able to provide an overview of case studies that might interest the design. These depend on the composition of the plastic, the industrial assembly systems, how they have been used and for how long.

What if a piece breaks? Of course, it would be nice to try to repair it yourself without fear of making mistakes, because at this point you would have quite clear how it works. But it is also true a great knowledge of the history of materials and production techniques is required to understand how to intervene properly. But even if you turn to professionals, you can always imagine yourself as a project manager because you need to know well what the end result should be.

Why talk about design? Why pay so much attention to industrial artifacts, often serial and reproducible even with more performing techniques? The biggest fear is that every time an item stops performing its function, every time it breaks, or we no longer like it, it can be replaced with another more modern, executive and functional one, without special attention and without paying attention. If you do it without a criterion of care and preservation, you risk losing a legacy that is important in your own way..

So the first rule is determined Never treat your furniture like exhibits in a museum, as they are in fact active elements, still in evolution, which must function and which must follow a line of development free from the classic purely conservative restrictions. But that does not mean that you should not take care of the fact that you can not proceed with the necessary replacements for the sake of functionality and safety in your environments.

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